It is important to first understand the process of digestion, and the role proper food plays in digestive problems before dealing with Hiatal Hernia. Enzyme depletion is threat # ONE of the 6 Greatest Health Threats.
A quite common but often overlooked cause of pain and discomfort is what is called “Hiatal Hernia.” Common complaints include bloating, abdominal gas, acid reflux, a pain in the chest, and indigestion. There are, of course, other reasons for such complaints, including diet and enzyme issues brought up elsewhere in this book, but this could be a contributing factor to such complaints.
When we swallow food, it passes down through the esophagus, and into the stomach. The esophagus has to pass through the diaphragm, our breathing muscle. At the junction of where the esophagus meets the stomach is a valve called the cardiac valve. This valve opens and closes to allow food to pass into the stomach and prevent it, or the digestive juices and hydrochloric acid from coming back through onto the delicate tissues of the esophagus.
What occurs is this: The Cardiac valve, being right at the junction of where the top portion of the stomach and the diaphragm meet, can become “involved,” in this junction, and “ride up” through the diaphragm. This, in turn, causes the Cardiac valve to not close properly, allowing the very acidic stomach juices to contact the lining of the upper esophagus. This problem is routinely treated with antacids, and even surgery, both of which should be absolute last minute treatment. The answer lies in simply mechanics. Most doctors will tell you there is no known cause for this problem, but there ARE some situations which can bring this on. One cause is being overweight. Abdominal fat usually carries lower in the belly when we are upright. However, when we lay down, this added weight shifts UP, leveling out by gravity. When you have this kind of persistent force pushing from below toward your stomach, this forces the upper portion to “ride up” and push up into and through the diaphragm.
Anyone who has ever vomited knows what the burning in the throat feels like from stomach acids. This same caustic activity is what creates the discomfort and damage to the tissues. Imagine this kind of irritation over many months of time. The tissues become severely inflamed and can even begin to bleed. This can become more serious over time if not corrected.
Another possible cause, I believe, is eating shortly before you go to bed. Whether you are overweight or not, adding food in the stomach, especially large meals, creates the same leveling out effect in the abdominal area which causes the same forces against the stomach. Regardless of either cause, it is important to correct this mechanical problem. Here’s a simply, but in my experience, 100% effective correction to the problem.
Remember, the problem is with the stomach riding up through the diaphragm. We simply need to bring the stomach back down, and an easy way to do this is as follows:
(NOTE: Proverbial disclaimer – If you have any problems with your legs, low back, or are concerned with your personal stomach situation, you should talk to your doctor about this procedure. While it is quite safe, your personal situation may warrant discussing this further. If your doctor feels it is an unsafe or harmful procedure, then follow his/her advice, but if they simply are skeptical about it working, then prove him/her wrong. Sometimes you have to weigh the benefits a attempting this a few times vs living with the stomach problem the rest of your life.)
Procedure: On an empty stomach, and when you know you will be on your feet for at least several hours, drink 2-4 glasses of water. The idea here is to place as much weight into the stomach as is possible and you can stand. Immediately after this, locate a stool, or stand on the second step from the bottom of a staircase. What you want to do is to step off of the small stool, or stairs, and land quite firmly on your feet. You DON’T want to absorb the shock of the landing with your legs or knees. You want the momentum of the downward motion of the stomach to continue on firmly after you land on the floor. This momentum will actually pull the stomach down in the abdominal cavity, repositioning it where it belongs.
Do this jumping at least 3 times, preferably 4-5 times. Be sure it is a FIRM landing or you defeat the purpose of the procedure. In most cases one or two series of jumps (with time interval between) should take care of this problem, if it IS the problem. If you don’t experience relief within the next day or so, try the procedure again. If twice doesn’t do it, then you may have something more serious going on. Remember, Hiatal Hernia can be magnified by the poor quality of foods you eat and the lack of enzymes in your food.
I have worked with patients who were diagnosed with “heart” problems, who in fact had a Hiatal Hernia problem. Once corrected, their “heart” condition never returned.
One Last Point. While the above is the most often causes of heartburn and related issues, there is another area you may want to take a look into. A primary culprit in the acid reflux, heartburn and Hiatal hernia is the Cardiac Valve mentioned above. This valve is controlled by nerves that exit from the spinal column in your midback area. If the valve itself is not functioning properly, it could very well be due to nerve related problems of the spinal joints where the nerves exit the spine. This is something a Doctor of Chiropractic should look at. The spinal adjustment can stimulate the nerves and remove any irritation that could be interfering with controlling the valve’s functioning! I hope this has been helpful to you and if you want more information on your health, nutrition and self-help, please visit my website!
Email with Questions to: drhealth (at) purehealthsystems (dot) com